Marape condemns human rights abuse in West Papua


PRIME Minister James Marape has condemned the reported human rights abuses of West Papuans by the Indonesian Government after protests following racist comments against indigenous Melanesians.
“I am waiting for a report from the Foreign Affairs Department on the reports on social media about the widespread rioting in West Papua and Papua provinces before I make an official statement on Papua New Guinea’s stand and concern,” Marape said.
“But for now I speak as an MP and I totally condemn, if there is any violence and killings of West Papuans.
“I don’t have accurate information on what is happening on the other side.
“So upon knowing what is happening and getting advice from Foreign Affairs, I will make an official statement.
Marape said while PNG respected Indonesia’s sovereignty over what was happening in their territory across the border, it also came with the need to respect human rights.
Earlier on, National Capital District Governor Powes Parkop said it was European colonisers who split up the island of New Guinea and gave the West Papuans to the Indonesians.
“I called on Papua New Guineans to repent for neglecting West Papuans since becoming independent in 1975,” Parkop said.
The NCD Governor said Papua New Guineans needed to speak up for their fellow Melanesians across the border.
“PNG must repent for forsaking our brothers and sisters on the other side,” he said.
“You must pray for them.
“But not just pray and repent quietly in your churches: put it in action as well.
“Come out on the streets.
“Tell the world and stand out for a worthy cause.
“Stand up for the love of God that he wants his people to be free.”
Parkop said on Saturday as a lead up to the country’s 44th independence celebration a march would be staged to protest Indonesia’s treatment of West Papua’s indigenous people.
Meanwhile, Papua New Guineans have been warned not to travel to Jayapura given the violent riots in West Papua, West Sepik police commander Moses Ibsagi said.
“The situation across the PNG-Indonesian border is still tenses since last Thursday,” he said.
“PNG citizens have been warned not to travel to Jayapura by the PNG Consul General in Jayapura.”